BCCL to mine 232 MT coal under DC line to stop ragging under inferno

coal-fire“Alternate line between Dhanbad and Chandrapura on the non-coal zone is the only solution, we have to speed-up the work (for the alternate line),” said Piyus Kumar, Director (Technical) of Ministry of Coal.

At least 232 MT coal has been excavated (mined) under the Dhanbad-Chandrapura railway line (DC line) in a bid to stop the ragging under inferno. “Mining plan is ready; Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL) got the plan prepared by Central Mine Planning and Design Institute (CMDIL) which also got the approval of Ministry of Coal”, said a BCCL official.

On this move the General Manager (EC Railway) LC Trivedi is scheduled to rush at Dhanbad on 21 July for a final talk with BCCL executives, he said.

On Tuesday, Piyus Kumar the Director (Technical) of the Ministry of Coal meets with Dhanbad DC A Dodde and discussed on several issues related with DC line. During meeting Kumar said, Communication (Transportation) on the DC line is impossible as it is highly affected by the underground inferno. “Alternate line between Dhanbad and Chandrapura on the non-coal zone is the only solution, we have to speed-up the work (for the alternate line),” he added.

Later Kumar also meets with BCCL’s CMD and directors. This project (Coal excavation) is planned to spread over in the stretch of three square kilometers so that coal can be mined from the depth and underground fire could be tackled, sources said.

Ministry of Coal has been asked Railway (Ministry) to immediately handover the DC line for earliest erecting the excavation projects, an official informed. DC line is spread over 34 kms area and it’s 14 kms stretch is affected with under-ground inferno, said the official. “Four projects (mining) are scheduled to come-up under the DC line belongs in the area of Katras, Sizua and Govindpur. About 232 MT coal stock has been estimated in these areas”, he added. Due to the threat of underground fire Communication (Movement) on Dhanbad- Chandrapura Railway line was completely closed on 15 June after considering the Director General of Mines Safety’s (DGMS) report.

Later Ministry of Railway issued a directive to the concerned railway officials stating that “Board has decided to stop operation of passenger and goods trains on Dhanbad–Chandrapura Railway line with effect from 15 June 2017”. In the directive to General Manager EC Railway it is stated that, “ Based on the inspection by DGMS and study it is clear that area falling under seven mines
including Busserya, Sendra Bansjora, Katras, South Govindpur and Teturia covering a stretch of 14 kms the stability of the ground beneath the Dhanbad-Chandrapura Railway track cannot be guaranteed. Therefore, in the interest of the safety of human lives, the movement of trains on the aforesaid lines is to be stopped”, informed the official.

Underground inferno raging since over 100 years is a stern threat, rehabilitation is essential where the fire is raging, said the official. In a scientific study, the National Remote Sensing Centre identified 42 spots which are strongly affected by the underground fire. Out of 42 only 31 spots need immediate evacuation, informed the official. We have planned to excavate of coal from those 31 spots to douse the fire. Excavation will start after rehabilitation”, said the official.

“A list of affected areas has been prepared; according to the priority rehabilitation process will start quickly. We are monitoring the fire through satellite”, he added.

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